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Thread: Are you supposed to keep adding weight to the bar forever? page 2

  1. #11
    yodiewan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sbhikes View Post
    My experience is similar. I got up to around 55lbs on overhead press and that's about as good as it gets. Can't seem to get beyond 75lbs on bench press either. Adding more weight doesn't seem to result in any adaptation at all. I struggle just the same or even worse the week after adding weight. If anything, I've mostly gotten less strong rather than more, although I can do more reps, not more weight.
    Do not despair! I was more or less stuck at 135 on squats for the first year or so that i was lifting. Whenever I tried to add weight, it would feel too heavy or I would tweak my back. Today (5 or so year since I started lifting) I did 290x4. I know people talk about awesome newbie gains, but that was not my experience, at least not across the board. Then again, the first couple years I was lifting, I did not really follow a program, I just went 3x/week and lifted :-P

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leida View Post
    Yes, that's correct. Linear gains exhaust themselves. For males, it is normal to reach about 1.5 BW SQT on the linear gains, which takes about a year-1.5 years. For women it's less. Once LGs are exhausted, an intermediate programming, such as MadCow, 5x3x1 or other is normally recommended, with an expectation of less gains a year. How much you gain during intermediate (opr advanced) stage depends on your age and talent.
    Does linear gains mean adding weight to the bar every workout, weekly, or what? I'm at 1.5 BW squat now. I looked into MadCow and 5/3/1, but decided on a hybrid of HST and SL 3x5, with more of an emphasis on hypertrophy.

    Quote Originally Posted by RichMahogany View Post
    This is true, but you should still be making progress. If not, you might be overtrained. What's your current bodyweight and lifts?
    Body weight: 165
    Squat: 245
    Bench: 65s (dumbbells)
    Rows: 125
    Overhead press: 100
    Deadlift: 255

    Quote Originally Posted by Neckhammer View Post
    No one program is the holy grail. Once your past being a novice you do need to switch things up.
    Yeah, I decided to switch to HST because I thought it was time to try something different. I like going heavy (2-5 reps), but I thought that doing nothing but that would wear me down.

    Quote Originally Posted by sbhikes View Post
    I'm going to try 531 even though I'm hardly strong enough for their calculations.
    For HST, I calculated that I was supposed to start with curls at 0 pounds. I guess you have to tweak the formula sometimes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gorbag View Post
    You can usually progress for a longer time on the big compound lifts because you have more possibilities to learn how to implement and improve tecnique and to fire more musclefibers to assist the lift.
    My deadlifts and especially squats did go up for a much longer time than the assistance exercises. But now it could be my curls that go up before my squats.

    Quote Originally Posted by quikky View Post
    You lost or started losing 30lb and you're wondering why your strength declined?
    Yes, I don't see why losing 15 pounds (at the time, it later became 30) would mean I had to drop my deadlift from 265 to 215 and still fail to get 5 reps.

    Quote Originally Posted by quikky View Post
    Are you doing StrongLifts? What are your current lifts and weight? What was your starting body weight and lifts numbers when you started your "bulk diet"?
    I'm doing a cross between HST and StrongLifts. At this point in the cycle, it's identical to StrongLifts 3x5 with some assistance exercises. My body weight was 163 at the start of the bulk, and it's 166 now. I gave my lifts above - they were the same before and after.

    Quote Originally Posted by quikky View Post
    What do you mean "not everyone has the ability to get strong"? What do you consider strong?
    I couldn't possibly define strong, but what I mean is that the ability to gain strength and muscle varies dramatically from one person to the next. I think I'm just not born to be strong, and I would be pretty happy to bench my weight someday.
    "Don't go in there, General, it's a trap! That's a grain chamber. It makes people like you into people like me."

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by PrimalHunter View Post
    Body weight: 165
    Squat: 245
    Bench: 65s (dumbbells)
    Rows: 125
    Overhead press: 100
    Deadlift: 255
    Don't take this the wrong way, but you're not strong enough to focus on hypertrophy. How many workouts have you failed at these weights that you determined you can't add 2.5 or 5 lbs to each of them from workout to workout? How's your diet and sleep?

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by RichMahogany View Post
    Don't take this the wrong way, but you're not strong enough to focus on hypertrophy. How many workouts have you failed at these weights that you determined you can't add 2.5 or 5 lbs to each of them from workout to workout? How's your diet and sleep?
    Yeah, that's what people say, build a foundation of strength first, then worry about hypertrophy later. But if the strength gains stop and stay stopped, is it a good idea to keep doing the same thing? I did gain some size in my arms and legs recently, so at least I made progress in that area.

    I couldn't say exactly how many times I failed at those weights, but we're talking about every workout in a row for a couple of months. I know I can't add 2.5 or 5 lbs because the weights are already too heavy, i.e., I can't get 5 reps on the first set (rows are an exception).

    My sleep is great, for the first time since I was a kid. I don't even really need an alarm clock.

    I think my diet is good. I don't really stuff myself, but I eat a little past satiety. I stopped doing 16/8 fasting in order to get more food in (now it's more like 13/11). I don't eat too many vegetables, but I don't think that matters. Mostly eggs, chicken, beef, fish, turkey, apples, oranges, pears, bananas, sweet potatoes, greek yogurt, honey, and coconut oil. Weekly frozen yogurt binges post workout, and the ever so occasional donut binge, LOL.
    "Don't go in there, General, it's a trap! That's a grain chamber. It makes people like you into people like me."

  5. #15
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    I'm so confused. So those aren't your lifts? You keep trying to complete workouts with weights at which you fail week in and week out? I've never heard of a program that advocated such a thing.

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RichMahogany View Post
    I'm so confused. So those aren't your lifts? You keep trying to complete workouts with weights at which you fail week in and week out? I've never heard of a program that advocated such a thing.
    Those are the weights I'm attempting to do 3x5. For overhead press, since I did 95 lbs for 3x5, I moved it up to 100 lbs. But I'll only get about 3 reps on the first set, then drop back to 95 for the next two sets.

    You're not really supposed to keep failing at the same weights forever on StrongLifts. If you fail to get your reps three workouts in a row, you're supposed to do a deload (cut the weight 10% and work back up). Fail three workouts in a row again, do another deload, and now you switch from 5x5 to 3x5. After the next two deloads, you switch to 1x5.

    I did all this, except I was hesitant to switch to 1x5. You're supposed to be squatting around 300 when that happens, and also I just couldn't bring myself to do only one set. After I tried 1x5 for a couple weeks, I went back to 3x5, and just said screw the deloads.
    "Don't go in there, General, it's a trap! That's a grain chamber. It makes people like you into people like me."

  7. #17
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    I try not to pimp this too often, especially on a thread for starting strength, but don't disregard the 1x5 done at a high intensity. I think younger fellas can get away with and thrive on higher volume, but some of us in our 3rd, 4rth decades plus categories do well with less volume and higher intensity.

    I personally do 5 compound exercises for one working set to failure twice a week. You can see the "whats your workout today" thread to see what I mean. I've made fairly consistent gains with this for quite some time and avoided injury. It may be good for a change of pace anyhow.

  8. #18
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    You gotta change something. What you're doing makes no sense to me and clearly isn't working. When's the last time you took a week off and came back with a weight you could actually handle?

  9. #19
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    I have found switching to volume helps me break through sticking points. 60% high reps on squats, bench, press (except for DLs) for 4 to 6 weeks. Then, returning to high weight low rep. 2 cents...
    "The problem with quoting someone on the Internet is, you never know if it's legit" - Abraham Lincoln

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neckhammer View Post
    don't disregard the 1x5 done at a high intensity.
    What does high intensity mean here? Are you talking about the 5 seconds up / 5 seconds down thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by RichMahogany View Post
    What you're doing makes no sense to me
    I don't understand why you say that. If you keep aggressively adding weight to the bar, at some point you'll encounter a weight you can't handle. What do you do when that happens?

    Quote Originally Posted by RichMahogany View Post
    When's the last time you took a week off and came back with a weight you could actually handle?
    Two months ago, at the end of my "screw the deload" phase. HST has you begin by taking 9-14 days off, then you start with sets of 15 with super lights weights going nowhere near failure. Over 6 weeks you add weight and cut reps until you work up to 5 reps with your 5RM. Then you do two more weeks of heavy stuff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fernaldo View Post
    I have found switching to volume helps me break through sticking points. 60% high reps on squats, bench, press (except for DLs) for 4 to 6 weeks. Then, returning to high weight low rep. 2 cents...
    I found that mixing in some higher reps added size but not strength. YMMV.
    "Don't go in there, General, it's a trap! That's a grain chamber. It makes people like you into people like me."

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